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Assassin's Creed II (PlayStation 3)

91
MobyRank
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
3.7
MobyScore
5 point score based on user ratings.
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Description

Desmond Miles, the last in the line of the ancient order of Assassins, has been captured by the modern-day descendants of the Templars, forced to experience past events through a device called Animus in order to obtain crucial information. However, one of the scientists unexpectedly switches sides, asking Desmond to put his trust in her hands and follow her out of the complex. Soon afterwards they escape the holding place and team up with some new allies that intend to use Desmond's knowledge against the Templars. Their new device is called Animus 2.0, an upgraded version of the original. This time, Desmond relives the life of Ezio Auditore di Firenze, a man who lived in Italy in the 15th century.

Ezio is a boisterous, seemingly carefree young man who likes to pick fights and chase skirts. But all that changes when his father and little brother are publicly executed by a man he trusted. Driven by vengeance, Ezio begins to discover more about his father's life, and realizes that he, too, belonged to the organization of the Assassins. Ezio becomes a skillful assassin himself, and is ready to go all the way to avenge the death of the people he loved.

Assassin's Creed II is a free-roaming action game very similar in concept and gameplay mechanics to its predecessor. The events of the game take place in Florence, Venice, Rome, and other locations in Italy. Besides fictional characters, the game has famous historical figures from the time period, such as Leonardo da Vinci, Niccolò Machiavelli, Cesare Borgia and others, who play an active role in the game's story. Authentic cultural and political environment of the Italian Renaissance is represented in the game along with fictitious accounts of the events, alternate history, and metaphysical theories.

The core gameplay resembles that of the previous game. The protagonist can freely explore several large cities and rural locations on foot or on horseback. It is also possible to swim and navigate boats in the game. Nearly every building can be climbed on, and the protagonist can access the tallest rooftops, observing the panorama with his Eagle Vision. Free-form jumping and running occupies a considerable portion of the gameplay.

One of the sequel's most notable additions is the financial system, which was not present in the first game. Items, weapons and armor can be bought in shops and repaired for money. There are many more weapon types and individual weapons and armor in the game. Ezio can carry swords, daggers, throwing knives, smoke bombs, a pistol, and a variety of upgradeable armor types. Weapons can also be picked up from fallen enemies and used in the same battle. Abundant treasure can be collected from various spots in the game world.

There are new ways of being stealthy in this sequel. Ezio can pay courtesans to distract guards, hire mercenaries to fight them, or commission thieves to create a distraction. Mission objectives and particularly the steps needed to accomplish them are noticeably more varied than in the previous game. The protagonist often receives new equipment and new challenges to experiment with. A few of these are built like mini-games: for example, at one point Ezio will pilot a flying device. The main character has his own headquarters in the game, a mansion and a small town adjacent to it. It is possible to invest money into the town's reconstruction, as well as customize the mansion.

The game features a significantly larger amount of side quests than its predecessor. A series of sub-quests involves locating, collecting and deciphering ancient words of wisdom that supposedly hold the secret of the universe. These quests often involve traversing complex indoor platform environments in order to reach the goal. These sequences require precise jumping and contain light puzzle-solving elements, similarly to contemporary Prince of Persia games.

Screenshots

Assassin's Creed II PlayStation 3 When you get tired of running around, let the horse do it for you.
Assassin's Creed II PlayStation 3 I'm still alive... well, it's a game after all.
Assassin's Creed II PlayStation 3 Fisherman won't mind you passing by... this time running, swimming, flying, it's all there.
Assassin's Creed II PlayStation 3 You can rotate the camera simply to enjoy the view or when you search for something.

Alternate Titles

  • "刺客信条2" -- Chinese spelling (simplified)
  • "Cike Xintiao" -- Chinese title (romanized)
  • "AC2" -- Common abbreviation

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

Assassin's Creed II gracefully swoops down and does what it set out to do - kill all the competition. Kadath Bird (706) 4.86 Stars4.86 Stars4.86 Stars4.86 Stars4.86 Stars
Become a Master Assassin! Big John WV (25276) 4.29 Stars4.29 Stars4.29 Stars4.29 Stars4.29 Stars

The Press Says

GamePro (US) Nov 07, 2009 5 out of 5 100
GamingExcellence Dec 01, 2009 9.7 out of 10 97
3D Juegos Nov 17, 2009 9.6 out of 10 96
AusGamers Nov 18, 2009 9.2 out of 10 92
GamingEvolution Jul 31, 2010 9 out of 10 90
Eurogamer.net (UK) Nov 17, 2009 9 out of 10 90
IGN UK Nov 17, 2009 8.8 out of 10 88
JeuxActu Nov 17, 2009 17 out of 20 85
Fragland.net Dec 11, 2009 85 out of 100 85
Edge Nov 17, 2009 8 out of 10 80

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Trivia

1001 Video Games

Assassin's Creed II appears in the book 1001 Video Games You Must Play Before You Die by General Editor Tony Mott.

Copy protection

The PC version originally required a permanent internet connection even in single-player. Some time later, Ubisoft removed this copy protection and the game only requires a one-time activation since then.

References

There is a moment during the game when the main character Ezio comes across his uncle named Mario. Ezio does not recognize him at first until his uncle tells him "It's a-me, Mario!". Either a coincidence or a homage to Nintendo's mascot.

Awards

  • 4Players
    • 2009 – #3 Best Localisation of the Year
    • 2009 – #10 Best Trailer of the Year
  • AceGamez
    • 2009 - Best Sandbox Game
  • Cheat Code Central (Cody Awards)
    • 2009 - Best Adventure Game
    • 2009 - Best Sounds
    • 2009 - Best New Character (for the main protagonist Ezio)
  • IGN
    • 2009 - Xbox 360 Game of the Year (Editors' choice)
    • 2009 - Best Xbox 360 Game (Editors' choice)
    • 2009 - Best Xbox 360 Game (Readers' choice)
    • 2009 - Best Xbox 360 Story (Readers' choice)
  • Game Informer
    • 2009 - Best Xbox 360 Game
  • GameShark
    • 2009 - Best Use of the Word 'vaginas'
  • GamePro
    • 2009 - Game of the Year
  • GamePro (Germany)
    • February 05, 2010 - Best Console Game in 2009 (Readers' choice)
    • February 05, 2010 - Best Console Action-Adventure in 2009 (Readers' choice)
  • GameSpot
    • 2009 - Best Xbox 360 Game (Editors' choice)
    • 2009 - Best New Character (for the main protagonist Ezio) (Editors' choice)
    • 2009 - Best New Character (for the main protagonist Ezio) (Readers' choice)
    • 2009 - Best Original Music (Readers' choice)
    • 2009 - Most Improved Sequel (Readers' choice)
  • Gamespy
    • 2009 - Cultural Appreciation Award
    • 2009 - Music to Our Ears' Award
  • Spike TV
    • 2009 - Best Action Adventure Game

Related Web Sites

MAT (75832) added Assassin's Creed II (PlayStation 3) on Dec 06, 2009
Other platforms contributed by Charly2.0 (31824), Kabushi (124767) and Sicarius (61021)